The buzz is all about Google's forthcoming move into mobile. A report on GigaOm ticks off a bullet point list of supposed details on the forthcoming gPhone, corroborating earlier reports that the Internet giant has tapped smartphone maker extraordinaire HTC to prototype - if not actually manufacture - the handset.
According to a blog post from Labor Day, gPhone's Linux-based operating system will look and act more like a traditional mobile phone OS than some folks might be wishing for. The OS will run Java applications and is said to pack a special Web browser with features similar to the iPhone and Symbian S60 browsers, and may or may not be based on WebKit (the engine that powers both of the aforementioned browsers as well as Apple's Safari browser for Mac and PC computers).
Additionally, Google has reportedly been demoing the OS on a handful of HTC-made handsets, all of which resemble the T-Mobile Dash (also HTC-made). While some reports indicate that Google's eventual mobile business model will focus on shopping the OS to various handset manufacturers and network providers, virtually everyone talking about gPhone today has agreed that Google is working with HTC on initial handset designs.
The New York Observer also reported that Google recently closed a deal to lease 130,000 square feet of new office space at 75 Ninth Avenue in Manhattan's Chelsea DIstrict. The deal would expand the company's New York City offices by approximately one-third, with the new space located directly across the street from existing 360,000 square foot digs at 76 Ninth Avenue. While details on the possible Google detail haven't been released, it has been reported that another space recently rented in the same building carried an asking rent of $70/sq. ft. More money than most of us can count, but small change for the still-growing digital giant.